(NIH): Treating underlying inflammatory conditions may reduce the risk of cardiovascular diseases.
A new study published online in JAMA Cardiology found that anti-inflammatory biologic therapies used to treat moderate to severe psoriasis can significantly reduce coronary inflammation in patients with the chronic skin condition.
The researchers analyzed 134 patients, from an ongoing, prospective cohort study at NIH, the Psoriasis Atherosclerosis Cardiometabolic Initiative cohort, who suffered moderate to severe psoriasis and had not received biologic treatment for at least three months before starting on the study’s therapy. Fifty-two of these patients were treated with topical or light therapies only and served as the control group.
The 134 patients, all of whom had low cardiovascular risk, underwent CT scans at the start of the study and again a year later to assess coronary inflammation using the perivascular fat attenuation index (FAI).
A significant reduction in coronary inflammation was found among those receiving biologic therapy, but there was no change in the control group. Even patients with preexisting coronary artery plaque saw a reduction in coronary inflammation following biologic therapy. An abnormal perivascular FAI was linked to a 6- to 9-fold increased risk of major adverse cardiovascular events.
Coronary artery inflammation particularly affects perivascular fat by changing its composition, making it attenuated, or less fatty, as captured by the perivascular FAI.
According to the authors, FAI is a novel imaging biomarker that can predict a patient’s risk of fatal heart attacks and other cardiac events years in advance, and independent of other traditional risk factors for heart disease
(Source: NIH, July 31, 2019)
Padma Shri Awardee
President Elect Confederation of Medical Associations in Asia and Oceania (CMAAO)
Group Editor-in-Chief IJCP Publications
President Heart Care Foundation of India